by Richard Hart
Cuushe EP reviewed.
People have spent years inventing, crafting, changing and debating various genres of music. Beyond the obvious debate about “rock and pop”, “disco and punk” and “dance and not dance”, there have been more complicated ones with the advent of the likes of grind-core, industrial, trip-hop and dub-step.
New Japanese act Cuushe is considered to be “dream-pop” which is a subtle and unusual genre but what it means is fairly self-explanatory. This music is dreamy, floating pop music and Cuushe’s debut EP is a beautiful, lyrical and somewhat strange entry into a small genre.
Influenced by the likes of “School of Seven Bells” and the legendary “Cocteau Twins”, Cuushe also recalls the work of ambient acts like “Boards of Canada.”
Her EP is loaded with remixes, many of which are hard to pin down but are very interesting. Her actual tracks begin with the long winded title of ‘9125days of Sleep’ (sic). It’s a gentle, beautiful track. It’s built around a shimmering gossamer beat which is somewhat like School of Seven Bells or Cocteau Twins.
“Do You Know the Way to Sleep” is the most ambient and a beautiful song. Moving in its simple charm, wrapped around a gentle piano tune, it’s a song that would be perfect to chill out to after a night out in a club.
“I Know About Silence” is somewhat more upbeat, with a sort of old school synth beat that runs throughout it. Very strongly reminiscent of Boards Of Canada, it builds up to a gentle but hugely uplifting crescendo.
Lyrically Cuushe’s work is built around soft calling chorus that are quite often unintelligible. This needn’t be a bad thing, after all Cocteau Twins Liz Frazer often sang in her own imaginary language and Sigur Ros’s perform in “hopelandic” but Cuushe’s PR claim that her lyrics are great. Without being able to hear them, it’s hard to give a comment on them.
The remixes are a strange bunch, as will tend to be the way with a remix. Dust of Dreams is a long, dream like and rather haunting piece of music. Summer Nights Sketch is a highly experimental piece of music that strongly conjures up an image of Japan.
Cuushe’s early work here is an mesmerizing slice of her dreams waiting to be explored and defined. Some dreams defy explanation, others have deeper meaning. With Cuushe, I think we’re going to find out soon which case applies here.
I’m looking forward to my next day-dream already!